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Otis: Unlikely Hurricane Hero
OTIS: UNLIKELY HURRICANE HERO
In late August, the nation was put to the test after Hurricane Harvey struck Texas. Journalists, professional and otherwise, brought back stories and images of the destruction in Harvey’s aftermath. Among those stories was one about a dog named Otis. Otis, a German shepherd mix, belongs to a 5-year-old boy in Sinton, Texas. “He’s a special dog,” said Salvador Segovia, the grandfather of Otis’ owner. “He’s been instrumental in helping my grandson following numerous hospital visits for seizures and asthma.” Apparently, Otis is a local celebrity due to his affable nature. He can saunter down to the Dairy Queen and score a free hamburger. Salvador says he’s also the only dog allowed to lie down in front of the county court house. When Harvey struck, dogs, cats, and people sprang into survival mode. For Otis, that meant gathering resources. The morning after the storm, a woman snapped a picture of a damp Otis trotting down the street. In his mouth, he toted an entire bag of dog food, and not a small one.
The woman posted the picture to Facebook. “This dog is walking around Sinton, Texas, carrying a [sic] entire bag of dog food with him. LOL #refugee,” the caption read. The image resonated with people and quickly went viral, being shared over 50,000 times. The people of the Lone Star State have long prided themselves on their pluck and resilience. “Must be a Texas dog cause [sic] he can survive without help,” one commenter wrote online. Another site called him “the hero Texas needed.” Otis’ canine resilience was both humorous and inspirational. The most powerful images in a crisis aren’t of Air Force One or of celebrities donating millions. They’re of ordinary people — and pets — striving, surviving, and making their way back home, just like Otis.
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